The government continues to encourage increased domestic demand for palm oil through mandatory biofuels. This year, the use of biofuel is targeted to reach 20 percent (B20), and next year, it will be increased to 30 percent (B30). Vice President, Ma'ruf Amin in his opening remarks at the 15th International Palm Oil Conference (IPOC) and 2020 Price Outlook International Palm Oil Conference in Nusa Dua, Bali, Thursday (31/10) said that this year, uptake of palm oil for the program B20 is estimated to reach 6.4 million tons. Next year, it will be upgraded to B30 with an additional 3 million tons. Thus, palm oil as a biodiesel material can reduce imports of fuels. Eventually, Indonesia's trade balance is free from deficit.
Regarding the strengthening of the national palm oil export market, VP Ma'ruf Amin said that he has met Malaysian government to discuss efforts in a bid to increase the export market, especially to Europe. But he emphasized that the government continues to encourage domestic consumption of palm oil.
VP Ma'ruf Amin admitted that right now, there is indeed a decline in the price of palm oil in the world. Indonesia is one of the countries producing large palm oil with good quality. Therefore, this market downturn must be dealt with by all existing stakeholders. He also asked the Ministry of Agriculture to accelerate the realization of the people's oil palm rejuvenation program to encourage increased productivity. The accelerated rejuvenation is expected to increase the competitiveness of Indonesian palm oil.
VP Ma'aruf Amin further stated that the national palm oil industry has contributed around Rp217 trillion to the country's foreign exchange. This becomes a foothold industry for many Indonesians. The existence of oil palm plantations in remote areas of Indonesia has significantly encouraged national development in remote and marginalized areas.
The 15th International Palm Oil Conference themed “Palm Oil Industry: Managing Market, Enhancing Competitiveness” was attended by more than 1000 participants from 18 countries. The conference, which was held by the Indonesian Palm Oil Association, is a gathering forum for businesspeople in the palm oil industry chain throughout the world.
Chairperson of the Indonesian Palm Oil Association, Joko Supriyono said that the government of Indonesia needs to develop sustainable national policies in the palm oil sector. The policy is to expand the absorption of foreign markets, especially developing countries. Moreover, currently, 70 percent of national palm oil production is aimed at the export market. In addition, the rejuvenation of people’s palm oil is a priority, because it is related to efforts of increasing production.